Evaluation of antioxidant activity and cytotoxicity of an ethanol extract of cannabis sativa on human breast cancer mda-mb-231 cell line

Hedyeh Parvaneh,1,* Babak babakhani,2 Mahdieh houshani,3

1. Department of Cellular and Molecular Biology, Islamic Azad University, Tonkabon Branch, Tonkabon, Iran
2. Department of Biology, Islamic Azad University, Tonkabon Branch, Tonkabon, Iran.
3. Department of Plant Sciences, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran



Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in the women. natural products extracted from medicinal plants can play an important role in cancer treatment. this study investigated antioxidant and cytotoxic activity of an ethanol extract of cannabis sativa in a human breast cancer cell line.


Mda -mb-231cell line was cultivated and proliferated. then, the cells exposed to different concentrations of c. sativa (25, 50, 100 and 200 μg/ml) and were incubated for 24, 48, and 72 hours. after the incubation period, the colorimetric mtt method was used to determine cytotoxicity. the total phenol, flavonoid, anthocyanin, and carotenoid contents of the extract as well as the antioxidant activity using dpph method were determined.


The ethanol extract significantly decreased growth of cells compared to control (p˂0.05). the maximum growth inhibition obtained 96.99% at the concentration 200 μg/ml. the extract of c. sativa is a rich source of antioxidant compounds. the phenol and carotenoid compounds of the extract were equal to 29.94±0.12 mg galic acid/g of dried weight, and 31.93±0.18 mg galic acid/g of wet weight of the plant, respectively. furthermore, the extract significantly inhibited dpph radicals and the highest inhibitory effect (51%) was obtained by 2.3 mg/ml of the extract.


These results suggest that the ethanol extract of cannabis sativa has significant antioxidant and cytotoxic activity against mda-mb-231 cell line. further studies are needed to clarify potential anticancer effects of its ingredients.


Antioxidant, cannabis sativa, mda-mb-231 cell line, mtt assay